Innovation: Still More Frustration than Inspiration
What’s the Latest Development?
British inventor James Dyson is on a world tour, promoting his new creation: A water faucet with a built-in hand-dryer. Dyson is the billionaire designer of the famous bagless vacuum cleaner and an example of how perspiration in the pursuit of a long-term goal can pay enormous benefits in return, whether than means a billion dollars or the satisfaction of understanding complex systems. “My inspiration to invent and redesign is fed through frustration,” said Dyson. “I spend a lot of time taking things apart and putting them back together, considering how they work and how they might work better.”
What’s the Big Idea?
While popular culture mythologizes inventors as lone wolves who are suddenly struck with moments of inspiration akin to divine revelation, creating innovative goods, whether through engineering or through painting, requires a willingness to tinker and fail. “The most important thing you need when redesigning something is perseverance and a willingness to fail. Inventors rarely have those hallowed ‘Eureka’ moments. Developing an idea and making it work takes time and patience.” While technology develops fast, successful ideas take time to finesse.
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